PureCircle Sigma-Beverages
PureCircle Sigma-Beverage may speed the beverage product development process 30% to 50%.

OAK BROOK, ILL. — PureCircle has extended its line of stevia applications with the introduction of Sigma-Beverage. The introduction of Sigma-Beverage extends the company’s Sigma line beyond its current dairy and tea applications.

“Sigma-Beverage was formulated with a carefully tailored, proprietary combination of steviol glycosides designed to address the unique needs for beverage formulations,” said Faith Son, vice-president of marketing and innovation for PureCircle. “We have seen success with this approach for our customers and are excited to help them further unlock the beverage category and reduce overall calories while meeting the taste desires consumers demand.”

Sigma-Beverage performs similarly to sugar at deep calorie reductions so formulators may create beverage solutions in an efficient manner, reducing development time by as much as 30% to 50%, according to the company.

John Martin, PureCircle
John Martin, senior director of global technical innovation for PureCircle

“Beverages have provided a challenge for formulators because of the high sweetness max,” said John Martin, PureCircle’s senior director of global technical innovation. “To achieve that high level of sweetness with stevia can often result in linger and a strong, sweetness aftertaste. However, by selecting the steviol glycosides that provide a very clean, sugar-like taste with a reduced linger, we have been able formulate a stevia ingredient that really works well for the challenges of beverage applications. We are extremely pleased with the results we are seeing.”

Ms. Son noted the new beverage application allows product developers to focus on specific formulation details.

“Sigma-Beverage gives developers a jump start and means they do not have to relearn things during the product development process,” she said. “There is still some tailoring to be done depending on the application. For example, we have certain glycosides in the leaf that enhance cola notes. Other glycosides may suppress those notes, but work well with an orange flavor.”

Looking ahead, she added there is still much to learn about stevia and the role it may play in food and beverage product development.

“When we started we were focused on 11 main glycosides,” Ms. Son said. “We are now up to 40 glycosides in the leaf. There is more to the stevia leaf than meets the eye.

“As we go through the discovery process and the characterizing of glycosides we will discover what the benefits of each may be.”